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e-CFR data is current as of January 15, 2021

Title 15Subtitle BChapter IXSubchapter BPart 923 → Subpart C


Title 15: Commerce and Foreign Trade
PART 923—COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT PROGRAM REGULATIONS


Subpart C—Special Management Areas


Contents
§923.20   General.
§923.21   Areas of particular concern.
§923.22   Areas for preservation or restoration.
§923.23   Other areas of particular concern.
§923.24   Shorefront access and protection planning.
§923.25   Shoreline erosion/mitigation planning.

Source: 61 FR 33806, June 28, 1996, unless otherwise noted.

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§923.20   General.

(a) This subpart sets forth the requirements for management program approvability with respect to areas of particular concern because of their coastal-related values or characteristics, or because they may face pressures which require detailed attention beyond the general planning and regulatory system which is part of the management program. As a result, these areas require special management attention within the terms of the State's overall coastal program. This special management may include regulatory or permit requirements applicable only to the area of particular concern. It also may include increased intergovernmental coordination, technical, assistance, enhanced public expenditures, or additional public services and maintenance to a designated area. This subpart deals with the following subsections of the Act: 306(d)(2)(C)—Geographic Areas of Particular Concern; 306(d)(2)(E)—Guidelines on Priorities of Uses; 306(d)(2)(G)—Shorefront Access and protection Planning; 306(d)(2)(I)—Shoreline Erosion/Mitigation Planning; and 306(d)(9)—Areas for Preservation and Restoration.

(b) The importance of designating areas of particular concern for management purposes and the number and type of areas that should be designated is directly related to the degree of comprehensive controls applied throughout a State's coastal zone. Where a State's general coastal management policies and authorities address state and national concerns comprehensively and are specific with respect to particular resources and uses, relatively less emphasis need be placed on designation of areas of particular concern. Where these policies are limited and non-specific, greater emphasis should be placed on areas of particular concern to assure effective management and an adequate degree of program specificity.

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§923.21   Areas of particular concern.

(a) The management program must include an inventory and designation of areas of particular concern within the coastal zone, on a generic and/or site-specific basis, and broad guidelines on priorities of uses in particular areas, including specifically those uses of lowest priority.

(b) In developing criteria for inventorying and designating areas of particular concern. States must consider whether the following represent areas of concern requiring special management:

(1) Areas of unique, scarce, fragile or vulnerable natural habitat; unique or fragile, physical, figuration (as, for example, Niagara Falls); historical significance, cultural value or scenic importance (including resources on or determined to be eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.);

(2) Areas of high natural productivity or essential habitat for living resources, including fish, wildlife, and endangered species and the various trophic levels in the food web critical to their well-being;

(3) Areas of substantial recreational value and/or opportunity;

(4) Areas where developments and facilities are dependent upon the utilization of, or access to, coastal waters;

(5) Areas of unique hydrologic, geologic or topographic significance for industrial or commercial development or for dredge spoil disposal;

(6) Areas or urban concentration where shoreline utilization and water uses are highly competitive;

(7) Areas where, if development were permitted, it might be subject to significant hazard due to storms, slides, floods, erosion, settlement, salt water intrusion, and sea level rise;

(8) Areas needed to protect, maintain or replenish coastal lands or resources including coastal flood plains, aquifers and their recharge areas, estuaries, sand dunes, coral and other reefs, beaches, offshore sand deposits and mangrove stands.

(c) Where states will involve local governments, other state agencies, federal agencies and/or the public in the process of designating areas of particular concern, States must provide guidelines to those who will be involved in the designation process. These guidelines shall contain the purposes, criteria, and procedures for nominating areas of particular concern.

(d) In identifying areas of concern by location (if site specific) or category of coastal resources (if generic), the program must contain sufficient detail to enable affected landowners, governmental entities and the public to determine with reasonable certainty whether a given area is designated.

(e) In identifying areas of concern, the program must describe the nature of the concern and the basis on which designations were made.

(f) The management program must describe how the management program addresses and resolves the concerns for which areas are designated; and

(g) The management program must provide guidelines regarding priorities of uses in these areas, including guidelines on uses of lowest priority.

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§923.22   Areas for preservation or restoration.

The management program must include procedures whereby specific areas may be designated for the purpose of preserving or restoring them for their conservation, recreational, ecological, historical or esthetic values, and the criteria for such designations.

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§923.23   Other areas of particular concern.

(a) The management program may, but is not required to, designate specific areas known to require additional or special management, but for which additional management techniques have not been developed or necessary authorities have not been established at the time of program approval. If a management program includes such designations, the basis for designation must be clearly stated, and a reasonable time frame and procedures must be set forth for developing and implementing appropriate management techniques. These procedures must provide for the development of those items required in §923.21. The management program must identify an agency (or agencies) capable of formulating the necessary management policies and techniques.

(b) The management program must meet the requirements of §923.22 for containing procedures for designating areas for preservation or restoration. The management program may include procedures and criteria for designating areas of particular concern for other than preservation or restoration purposes after program approval.

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§923.24   Shorefront access and protection planning.

(a) The management program must include a definition of the term “beach” and a planning process for the protection of, and access to, public beaches and other public coastal areas of environmental, recreational, historical, esthetic, ecological or cultural value.

(b) The basic purpose in focusing special planning attention on shorefront access and protection is to provide public beaches and other public coastal areas of environmental, recreational, historic, esthetic, ecological or cultural value with special management attention within the purview of the State's management program. This special management attention may be achieved by designating public shorefront areas requiring additional access or protection as areas of particular concern pursuant to §923.21 or areas for preservation or restoration pursuant to §923.22.

(c) The management program must contain a procedure for assessing public beaches and other public areas, including State owned lands, tidelands and bottom lands, which require access or protection, and a description of appropriate types of access and protection.

(d) The management program must contain a definition of the term “beach” that is the broadest definition allowable under state law or constitutional provisions, and an identification of public areas meeting that definition.

(e) The management program must contain an identification and description of enforceable policies, legal authorities, funding program and other techniques that will be used to provide such shorefront access and protection that the State's planning process indicates is necessary.

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§923.25   Shoreline erosion/mitigation planning.

(a) The management program must include a planning process for assessing the effects of, and studying and evaluating ways to control, or lessen the impact of, shoreline erosion, including potential impacts of sea level rise, and to restore areas adversely affected by such erosion. This planning process may be within the broader context of coastal hazard mitigation planning.

(b) The basic purpose in developing this planning process is to give special attention to erosion issues. This special management attention may be achieved by designating erosion areas as areas of particular concern pursuant to §923.21 or as areas for preservation or restoration pursuant to §923.22.

(c) The management program must include an identification and description of enforceable policies, legal authorities, funding techniques and other techniques that will be used to manage the effects of erosion, including potential impacts of sea level rise, as the state's planning process indicates is necessary.

[61 FR 33806, June 28, 1996; 61 FR 36965, July 15, 1996]

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